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Effect of massage of the hamstring muscle group on performance of the sit and reach test
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  1. A Barlow,
  2. R Clarke,
  3. N Johnson,
  4. B Seabourne,
  5. D Thomas,
  6. J Gal
  1. School of Applied Sciences, University of Glamorgan, Pontypridd, Wales, UK
  1. Correspondence to:
 Dr Gal
 School of Applied Sciences, University of Glamorgan, Trefforest, Pontypridd CF37 1DL, Wales, UK; jgalglam.ac.uk

Abstract

Objective: To investigate if a single massage of the hamstring muscle group would alter the performance of the sit and reach test.

Methods: Before treatment, each of 11 male subjects performed the sit and reach test. The treatment consisted of either massage of the hamstring muscle group (both legs, total time about 15 minutes) or supine rest with no massage. Performance of the sit and reach test was repeated after treatment. Each subject returned the subsequent week to perform the tests again, receiving the alternative treatment relative to their initial visit. Mean percentage changes in sit and reach scores after treatment were calculated for the massage and no massage treatments, and analysed using Student’s t tests.

Results: Mean (SD) percentage changes in sit and reach scores after massage and no massage were small (6.0 (4.3)% and 4.6 (4.8)% respectively) and not significantly different for subjects with relatively high (15 cm and above) values before treatment. Mean percentage changes in sit and reach scores for subjects with relatively low values before treatment (below 15 cm) were large (18.2 (8.2)% and 15.5 (16.2)% respectively), but no significant differences were found between the massage and no massage groups.

Conclusions: A single massage of the hamstring muscle group was not associated with any significant increase in sit and reach performance immediately after treatment in physically active young men.

  • massage
  • sit and reach test
  • flexibility

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